Every spring, the watch world gathers in Basel, Switzerland, to showcase and view the latest in horological creations at BaselWorld. This year, BaselWorld is being held in a new facility where over 100,000 visitors from around the globe and 1,815 exhibitors are expected to attend. This week, Team iW buckled up and headed for Basel to bring you exclusive coverage from your favorite brands, technologies and people.
In addition to up-to-date coverage of new releases and happenings, stay tuned daily for installments from the dedicated team behind International Watch Magazine. Be sure to stop by the iW Facebook page for even more exclusive footage and images.
It is Day Four, or maybe it’s Five. I think I’ve lost count in the exciting haze – ramped up by a bit of jet lag – of new watches, new people, and yes, a new and improved BaselWorld watch and jewelry fair. Redesigned booths (if you can call these multi-story behemoths booths) within an architecturally impressive new Hall 1 create a truly fresh experience, even for those of us who have attended BaselWorld for many years. And there seems to be an energy that goes along with all the change.
But in addition to the fabulous new timepieces, a lot of conversation this year is about statistics. Like the amount of planning time the new space required (5 years), or the number of months of construction work (22), or the tonnage of steel keeping everything where it should be (6,800). More interesting stats: 450,000 square meters of concrete were used, and the budget was in excess of 400 million Swiss francs for the building project. Amazing.
We journalists throw around a few less-amazing stats of our own, usually over a glass of wine or beer at the end of the day. The conversation goes something like this…First journalist, sighing: You know I’ve been coming to Basel every year for (fill in the blank) years. Second journalist, bigger sigh: Well I’ve been coming to Basel for (fill in the blank + 1) years. You get the idea. And so we go on, like battle-worn, one-upping foot soldiers, when the truth of the matter is we wouldn’t miss BaselWorld for anything.